Monday, June 1, 2015
KIng Giant - Black Ocean Waves
Those of you dear waveriders who know me, know how much King Giant from Pimmit Hills, VA, means to me. I won't go into length about it again, but they are the reason why I met my wife, so apart from creating great music that I love, they have given me so much more. Therefore, when their third full-length, 'Black Ocean Waves', is about to hit the streets I was more than ecstatic to be given the opportunity to review it.
They have always had a penchant for writing about the darker sides of lives, and nothing has changed this time around either lyrically. Musically however, the guys have upped the ante somewhat. What I mean is they have retained their trademarked southern darkness sound but have added more colours to the canvas. And it is beautiful! One song that encompasses this the best is 'Red Skies'. Slowish and moody in parts, wonderful guitar harmonies á la Thin Lizzy are performed to great aplomb by Todd Ingram and Dave Kowalski, in a way that King Giant never have done it before. All of a sudden they burst out in true KG fashion, especially around the solo, only to switch back to the moody slowish parts. Brooks and Floyd Walters, drums and bass guitar respectively, hold it all together brilliantly while Dave Hammerly's voice is better than ever. Wonderful, dear waveriders, absolutely wonderful!
Another aspect within all the heaviness and darkness, King Giant are going more for melody and emotions than knuckle-dragging speed although they still mix all of that in the songs. But this change broadens everything they are about and allows them so much more freedom to expand their songwriting. Just check out album closer 'There Were Bells' and you know what I am talking about. Old King Giant meets new King Giant and it's a fantastic encounter, you hear?! Also, opener 'Mal De Mer' follows along the same traits but is even more bold. After all, how many bands start an album with an instrumental, four minute long piece? A band of King Giant's stature of course.
Within all the fantastic music on the album, there are three tracks that I want to pay some extra attention to. 'The One That God Forgot', 'Requiem For A Drunkard' and 'The Gentleman Carny'. Lyrically, they are as dark as King Giant ever have written. Musically, they add even more to the evil, destroyed and corrupted minds the band portrays. Taking us down the dark alleys of the uttermost horror, it feels like I am the one they are singing about, as if the songs were movies and I'm the main character. Don't know how they do it, but it is amazing.
'Black Ocean Waves' is through and through a fantastic release and I didn't expect anything less from theses guys. But to blow my mind the way they do it, sends out a message to all bands out there. Look at how KIng Giant are doing things. Don't copy anything, just look at their approach and their fearlessness of trying new angles within their music. Incorporate that, and think not of what everyone might think. If you do, you will create one of a kind music that stands for integrity and limitless talent. King Giant are the real deal, don't miss out waveriders!